IPL 2012: Manoj Tiwary dedicates sixer off Malinga to girlfriend

Manoj Tiwary guided the Kolkata Knight Riders innings with a gritty 41 off 43 balls AFP

By CricketCountry Staff

Mumbai: May 17, 2012

Kolkata Knight Riders middle-order batsman Manoj Tiwary on Wednesday revealed that his girlfriend had challenged him to it a six off pacer Lasith Malinga which the batsman was successful in achieving during the match against Mumbai Indians.

Speaking about the delightful shot Tiwary said, “I was very determined to do that. My girlfriend had once told me that I can never hit Malinga for a six. I accepted the challenge and it was playing at the back of my mind since a long time. I am feeling very good about it and I am going to call her and tell her that I can hit sixes to Malinga.”

Kolkata beat Mumbai Indians at Wankhede stadium to move up the points table to second spot and have virtually qualified for the knockout stage unless a major turnaround in results of other matches and net run-rate halts them.

In a low-scoring match Mumbai were threatening to bowl out Kolkata for a paltry score. However, a gritty innings of 41 from 43 balls by Manoj Tiwary saw them through during the middle overs.

“Initially, there was a bit of bounce and Kallis got a beauty from RP Singh. We knew that if we could build a partnership, we would make it to 140. We managed to take their wickets and that gave us a chance,” he said.

Kolkata surprised everyone by choosing to go with three spinners and just one pacer in the form of L Balaji. However Gambhir got his cards right as the slow bowlers tied up the strong Mumbai batting.

“The plan was just to slow down the pace as we knew Gibbs would take some time to attack the spinners. First few overs were very crucial for us and we got the start we wanted. The pressure kept building on them and the game turned in our favour,” Tiwary was quoted as saying by the official website of Indian Premier League.

The biggest trump card for Kolkata this season has been their spinner Sunil Narine who has been impressive throughout the season and is the current purple cap holder.

Referring to Narine s success, Tiwary said, “He has been exceptional for us. It is very difficult to read him. He is a mystery bowler, and I hope he remains till the finals. It is very difficult to attack him as he bowls off-spin, top spin, leg-cutter and carom balls, and has got yorkers as well.”

“The best way to play him is to go for singles and attack the other bowlers. I faced him first when I got a hundred against West Indies in Chennai. I was fortunate enough to hit him for a six when I was in my 90s,” he added.

Kolkata have one match left in the league phase against Pune Warriors India. A win against Pune would firmly place them in the top two rankings of the points table by the end of the league.

“We would love to be in the top two so that we can get an extra chance to make it to the finals. If we play the same kind of cricket that we have been playing for the most part of the tournament, we can pull it through. Our next match is against PWI and since they re not in the best of form, we have a psychological edge over them,” concluded Tiwary.